A new teaching tool that will help students in their geography lessons has been unveiled at Jefferson Elementary School.

Students at Oklahoma Baptist University have helped Jefferson by tracing, chalking and painting a U.S. map at the school.


A new teaching tool that will help students in their geography lessons has been unveiled at Jefferson Elementary School.
Students at Oklahoma Baptist University have helped Jefferson by tracing, chalking and painting a U.S. map at the school.
Vickie Penson, principal at Jefferson, said teachers will be able to utilize the new map in their classes.
“The map will be a wonderful teaching tool for teachers,” she said. “Students can use sidewalk chalk to label states, capitals, cities, highways, regions, mountain ranges, etc. Nature will wash away the chalk so the map can be used again and again.”
The map is oriented on a north/south axis, Penson said.
“Teachers can use the map to teach and review directions, compass rose, etc,” she said. “Our teachers will be creative and come up with an endless amount of activities for our new map.”
Dr. Pam Robinson, dean, College of Arts and Sciences and professor of education, had students in her Success 101 class at OBU participate.
“This service project was designed to acquaint the students with community needs by performing a
service and to enhance community within the class,” she said. “Both goals were accomplished.”
Students in Robinson’s class were excited about helping, she said.
“While they weren’t extremely keen on giving up a Saturday morning, they were excited about doing something for children,” Robinson said. “They took on the project with gusto. With some consultation from OBU’s art faculty, we figured out how to proceed in creating this 27- by 16-foot map. Based on observation, by the end of the first hour of work, they were really enjoying themselves.”
A couple of the students spent three hours tracing the map at Will Rogers Elementary on a Friday, Robinson said.
Those students were Brittney Johnson and Alex Johnson.
They both said it took about half a day to trace.
“It was a little more daunting than we assumed,” Brittney Johnson said.
The other students traced around the templates, then painted, Robinson said.
“We gained an appreciation of how very large Alaska is,” she said.
Student Christa Humphreys said this map is something the students will always remember.
“We’re doing things that some of these kids will remember,” she said. “It makes me feel gool.”
Student Bailee Mauldin agreed.
“It’s gonna be something they’ll remember,” she said.
On the day students first saw the map, Penson said she announced a class of OBU students spent their Saturday providing students with a big surprise on the playground as a community service project.
“Before the kids came out to recess, I climbed to the top of ‘the volcano’ with my camera,” she said. “When the kids were released from the cafeteria for recess, the first group ran screaming and yelling out to the big concrete slab to get a first glimpse of the surprise.”
Penson said students did not even notice she was atop of the volcano for quite some time. They ran right for the U.S. map the students had painted and started yelling out and standing on the state they knew.
“Once they noticed that I was up high taking pictures, they wanted to know why the OBU students painted the playground slab and map for us,” Penson said. “They also repainted our basketball free throw areas, 4-square and hopscotch. Then the students wanted me to take their picture on the state of their choice. Some were choosing states they had visited, boys were choosing the state of their favorite baseball or basketball team and some chose the state they were born.”
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Josh Burton may be reached by calling 214-3926.